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HOUSING SPECIAL NEW BUILD CASE STUDY


they work, often making several visits. Thorn and Walter admit they can’t stop a buyer from installing energy guzzling gadgets, such as plasma televisions, but they hope the tenants will listen to their advice. Thorn stresses that the houses have


been designed to look entirely ‘normal’, complete with a fake chimney on top, made from plastic. Only five or six of the many people that have enquired about buying one have been specifically interested in their energy efficiency. However, they should be pleasantly surprised by the low energy bills, projected at £186 per year for heating, £108 for hot


water and £58 for lighting, in a three-bed semi with a 96 sq m floor area. ‘What we’re trying to do here is a very low- key form of social engineering,’ Thorn explains. The entire development is subject to a two-year study of predicted versus actual energy consumption by Surrey University. No results are publicly available as yet, although Thorn says ‘it does look like it is working’ and promises to reveal all when the study is finished. Building to Code Level 5 instead of


current building regulations added 23% to the cost of the scheme, Thorn says, although Walter adds that this could probably be reduced to 15% extra if the council were to build more, thanks to the experience it has gained. However, Woking Borough Homes has lowered its sights for the time being, with plans to build 43 flats to Code Level 4. Thorn says a recovery in the property market will probably be needed before there are funds to build more Code 5 houses. Until then, Brookwood Farm offers a glimpse of the future.


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PROJECT TEAM Client: Woking Borough Homes Builder: Lacey Simmonds Homes


ArChiteCt: Lacey Simmonds Homes energy ConsultAnt: Ramboll


Ventilation Solutions by Fläkt Woods Limited


www.cibsejournal.com


June 2011 CIBSE Journal 43


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